This was how I rocked up to work on the day that my company turned pink in support of Cancer Research (note the sparkly pink nails!) Now this is a far cry from how I would normally dress. Normally, given the choice, I’d sport all black with maybe a dark coloured t-shirt but I wanted to be fun and participate in the event. Sadly not a lot of people followed suit.
Now I’ll begin with the positives. I got a lot of compliments on my “barbie” t-shirt which, if you know me at all, is actually Trixie Mattel but perhaps that was a little too niche for the small town folk where I live. I also got a lot of compliments on my Grease Pink Ladies jacket.
I did also receive my fair share of small-town gossip, gender prejudice and basic sexism/homophobia. One person said “I hope you’re not going out like that, you’ll get the wrong kind of looks.” Another one asked “Why does it say Ladies on your jacket when you’re a man?” And I got a lot of Princess and Barbie comments.
Something I did rather enjoy was the personality that came out when my confidence came through. It was a defence mechanism but my brain was already planning responses to comments before they were even said. Somebody asked me if Danny was picking me up after work for some Summer Lovin’, to which I replied “There are worse things I could do.” Or when somebody else asked me which Pink Lady I was supposed to be, my reply was “I can be whichever one you want.” It was a kind of confidence I’d never expressed when other people were around.
But my confidence didn’t last very long and after about three hours I was ready to call it a day and never leave my room again for a couple of weeks. What could possibly have happened that is so drastic? Well, his name’s Charley. If you follow this blog then you know about Charley. He comes into my work and I’m fairly besotted with him because he’s gorgeous. I don’t have the confidence to talk to him (because he’s young and cute and I feel old and overweight) but recently a friend at work happened to let slip to him that he had an admirer (that admirer would be me!) Apparently, according to her, he was flattered etc. I found all this out on Wednesday and the first time I saw him was today, when I was dressed in my Pink Ladies and Trixie Mattell outfit.
Well, he didn’t say anything. I was operating the self-serve checkouts and he always goes through self-serve, apart from today when he decided to go through a manned checkout. Well, I felt like I was being ignored or at least avoided. And it made my confidence come back down to earth with a thud.
I’ve spoken of love and lust before and about how sometimes I don’t feel that I’m anybody’s type and that I’ll be eternally single. In my head I had built my hopes up to when I next saw Charley that he might initiate a conversation and then I’d be able to go from there with things. His avoidance of me was a bludgeon to my soul. And it’s funny how one simple thing can undermine all of the compliments you’ve had during the day. Suddenly I felt like a freak and an idiot for even attempting to step outside of my comfort zone.
The sad thing is that I did like the outfit. I like sort of cosplay movie/video game drag and since watching RuPaul’s Drag Race I’ve found myself able to admit that to myself and others. But I’m so desperate for love that I’m willing to bend and break who I am just to fit other people’s likes. Like now, I have a list in my mind of things I want to change to make me more of a person that Charley would like. I see the slightly camp things I like (high heels and drag) and want to change them because what if that’s what he doesn’t like about me? I want to lose weight because I feel I’m too fat for anybody to ever love. I want to basically change myself to be the ideal person for Charley, but I know then that I won’t be me.
There’s a sort of resentment too, that this would be the first day I see Charley since he found out I liked him, and I was dressed like that. Surely it shouldn’t make a difference but I need something to blame about why he doesn’t like me and I’m currently inclined to blame the outfit. If, next time I see him, he doesn’t talk to me, I will blame something else; my hair, my weight, my glasses etc. The list goes on.
This shows up in other ways too. I’ve been considering getting a tattoo for a long time but I recently read on somebody’s dating profile “I hate tattoos” and so now I’m scared to get one because what if my ideal guy (perhaps Charley) hates tattoos? Then I’ll end up hating that about myself because I feel it’s preventing me from getting love.
What I really wanted was some open and honest advice about how to love ones self and how to be comfortable in doing things you want to do. How do you say “Fine, if you don’t like that part about me then that’s your problem because I’m not changing it.” And when I hear about the drag performers from Drag Race having boyfriends or husbands or partners, I wonder how they were comfortable enough with their drag side to attract a partner that was also comfortable enough with that side of them?